For a limited time, MoviePass is offering a one-year subscription plan for a flat fee of $89.95, which translates to $7.50 a month (that price already includes a $6.55 processing fee). That price is under this year’s 3Q average movie ticket, which the National Association of Theater Owners pegged at $8.93.
Existing MoviePass customers will receive 25% savings from their current $9.95 per month plan if they subscribe to the new one-year MoviePass subscription plan.
Many in distribution and exhibition are shaken up by MoviePass, especially since it’s an outside company aiming to dictate the market value of movie ticket prices. And they say that the company is bound to lose money on its monthly movie ticket plan, especially if there’s a rush at the box office during the holiday season.
But MoviePass is reportedly offsetting that loss by profiting off its sales of marketing data related to its subscribers. AMC Theatres reportedly shopped around their version of a monthly ticket price plan to the major studios, which Deadline heard was met with a cold response. Essentially, the business notion of these monthly subscription movie ticket plans break down if the subscriber/moviegoer goes to the cinema more than two times a month. The year-end holiday-moviegoing season is a major traffic time at cinemas where people flock in droves. The period of Dec. 16, 2016 to Jan. 5, 2017 grossed $1.1 billion in domestic ticket sales alone.
Since MoviePass announced its $9.95 monthly plan in August whereby a subscriber can go to the cinema multiple times, MoviePass, majority owned by MoHelios and Matheson Analytics, Inc, saw its number of subscribers hit 600K.
“This limited time offer is great for movie-lovers. At $6.95 per month, it’s hard to compare it to anything else that provides as much entertainment for a full year,” said Mitch Lowe, CEO of MoviePass in a statement. “We are entering the prime movie going season, so now is the perfect time to take advantage of the MoviePass movement,” continued Mr. Lowe.
“HMNY continues to be the biggest supporter of MoviePass, as it outpaces any other movie theater subscription service and continues to disrupt the movie theater industry,” said Ted Farnsworth, Chairman and CEO of HMNY. “We look forward to helping MoviePass continue to broaden its reach and modernize the movie theater industry.”
Earlier this week on CNBC, Lowe, who was a co-founding executive of Netflix, said that MoviePass was looking into launching a streaming service. As a result shares of Helios and Matheson surged $2.06 to $12.33 on Monday.
The monthly subscription gets a MoviePass member access to the ticket buying mobile app and a MasterCard debit card. If a movie chain or theater honors a MasterCard debit card, then they by default honor MoviePass. That’s 91% of all theaters per NATO that honor MasterCard debit card. When a MoviePass buyer is within 100 yards of the theater, they can choose their ticket/showtime on their App and the App then funds the ticket price for that showtime to the user’s MasterCard debit card. That card is then presented at the box office. However, the MoviePass user has to pick up their ticket in less than a half hour. Imax and 3D showtimes aren’t honored, and reserved seating isn’t largely available through the MoviePass system.